Over the past few decades, the job market has been through quite a few changes. If you ask one of your parents or grandparents how they got their first job, they’ll probably say they applied to a “help wanted” sign or responded to a newspaper ad. Technology advancements in hiring and recruitment has drastically change today’s job market.
If you’ve been asked to make a video resume, get an edge on the competition, or just curious, then this article is for you.
What is a Video Resume?
A video resume is a way for you to showcase your personality, create a great first impression, and emphasize your talent and skills. It’s more than just transforming your paper resume into a video format. It could be the secret weapon that you can use to help you get your dream job. The entire application/interviewing process is based on this magic question: Why should the employer hire you? Just like a traditional resume, a video resume needs to cover the essentials:
If putting yourself on the spot in from of a cameral isn’t your thing, no worries!!!! Not all video resumes need to show a candidate talking directly to a camera. Other styles include:
- Whiteboard Video
Why Create a Video Resume?
You are marketing a product…YOURSELF!!! What do companies do to market their products? Commercials, right? So a video resume is simply a commercial about you and what you have to offer potential employers. Since we live in a world where attention spans are shrinking, and people want everything in an instant, a video is the perfect way to get attention and get your message across and FAST!!! With studies finding that visuals are processed 60,000x faster than text, a video resume will get your message across straight away and could spark the interest of a recruiter or hiring manager that has been looking at resumes all day.
In addition to that, a video resume is likely to leave a lasting impression. Research shows that people remember 10% of what they hear, 20% of what they read, and 80% of what they see and do. So, by watching your resume instead of reading it, recruiters are more likely to remember you when the time comes to hire a candidate.
How To Make a Video Resume: 7 Key Elements
If you’ve never made a video resume before (or even a video before!) it may be overwhelming to think about, and you may not know where to start. Here are 6 top tips to help you along the way.
- Don’t Just Read Out Your Resume
The whole point of a video presentation is to offer a potential employer greater insight into you than a traditional resume can, so just reading aloud the contents of your CV is a waste of everyone’s time.
- Write a Script
Do not try and wing it. To make sure you cover the essentials mentioned above, write down what you are going to say. Then practice how you are going to say it. If you’re going to be on camera then it’s also best to memorize the script.
Sample Resume Script:
Hello DataSense, Inc.
My name is Jamie Doe, and I want to become your new social media specialist. Since DataSense is newly active on social media, I want to apply my experience in online community engagement to help your company get more involved in the lives of its customers.
In my spare time, I run the social media accounts for my friend’s book review podcast. I use the sites’ analytics to determine when his listeners are most active on his social media pages, and I schedule posts to publish at the ideal time every week and when a new episode goes live.
I also create monthly polls to ask his listeners what books they liked the best and ask them to provide recommendations for him to review. With this fun side opportunity, I’ve successfully created an online book club around my friend’s podcast and increased his social media engagement—and his listenership—by 15%.
- Make it Relevant
Just like a paper resume, your video resume should be specific to the role you are applying for. A generic video is unlikely to impress potential employers, but personalization will show them how much the role means to you and will make for a more memorable application!
- Keep it Short
The average time for a video resume is 1-2 minutes, with 90 seconds being the sweet spot. Recruiters are busy people. They have a lot of resumes to get through and they want to be able to do it as quick as possible.
- Get Creative
Unfortunately, a video alone is not going to make you stand out. Tons of people are making video resumes now, so you need to make yours worth watching. Think outside the box and get creative when it comes to filming your video. YouTube has great examples of different types of video resumes for inspiration.
- Make it Professional
This might seem like stating the obvious, but your video should be of a professional quality. Thankfully, most smartphones these days are capable of filming in HD. It’s fine to shoot it (or animate it) yourself, but make sure that the lighting, framing and editing are akin to that of a video made by a professional. Also, make sure that your voice can be heard clearly–whether you’re speaking directly to the camera or recording a voiceover.
- Edit What You Make
Creating a video resume is not a “one-take” and you’re finished deal. There will be plenty of takes to make sure you get it right. Be sure to review your takes and get feedback from family and friends. To assist with editing, there are plenty of free video editing programs to try. You don’t have to be a seasoned editor to make small changes that go a long way.
A video is an extra opportunity to show a company why you really would be an excellent addition to their team, so have fun and take advantage of it. Don’t expect your video resume to replace your traditional resume. Not all employers are interested in a video resume, and others are worried about discrimination issues, such as hiring candidates because of how they look and sound rather than their qualifications. However, a well-done video can bolster your candidacy for employment.